by Jenn Berle (aka Berle Scout)
San Diego Roller Derby’s Rockettes dusted off their flashy blue and gold uniforms to make their 2012 season debut against the Prison City Derby Dames from Chino, California. On Saturday, March 10, hundreds of fans crowded the walls and floors of San Diego’s Skateworld to watch these two tough teams battle it out. This isn’t the first time Prison City has put up a fight at Skateworld - the San Diego Roller Derby Starlettes took on this team back in the 2010 season, bringing home a victory. The Rockettes knew they were facing a strong team and trained hard for weeks, scrimmaging with the Starlettes and practicing strategy and endurance. But did their hard work pay off?
The evening kicked off with a 30-minute mini-bout from San Diego Roller Derby’s “C Team” - a mix of fresh meat and girls who have also played on the Rockettes in the past. The C Team ladies fought hard until the end, but it was Prison City who pulled off a win. This was the debut bout for blockers Joz of Life and Stella Hot Mess, but who could tell? Stella proved she’s not to be underestimated by scoring the coveted MVP Blocker award at the after party. MVP Jammer award recipient Litl Rampage proved that size definitely doesn’t matter in this sport. Prison City’s best competitors were Black Mamba (blocker) and Squint (jammer).
With the crowd still flowing through the doors, the SDRD Rockettes and the Prison City Derby Dames took the floor. During the first few jams, PCDD made it incredibly difficult for the Rockettes’ jammers Iliac Attack and Snow Bunny on Wheelz to get through the pack. PCDD created strong walls while simultaneously distracting the Rockettes blockers enough for their jammers, such as Em I Ay, to sneak through and gain lead jammer status. After just a few jams, Prison City had more than a 30 point lead over the Rockettes, who had barely scored 6 points.
It didn’t take long for the Rockettes to adjust their game and light a fire under Prison City. The Rockettes’ fierce blockers Boogie Woman, Rockalishous, and NeuralizeHer began tackling PCDD’s strong walls, allowing the lightning-fast Shanghai Surprise to get lead jammer status along with the rest of the Rockettes’ jammers. The gap in the score was slowly closing with each jam. With half time approaching and the score getting closer and closer, the Rockettes managed to pull off some strategic moves by trapping one of PCDD’s players, allowing Snow Bunny on Wheelz to repeatedly lap the pack, virtually untouched. The roar of the crowd was almost deafening as Bunny scored point after point after point. Going into halftime, the Rockettes had gained a much-needed lead of 62 to 54.
When the second half began, it was clear that the Rockettes were not willing to give up their hard-fought lead. Blockers Nicci Two Skates, Eezzz Nutzzz, Belinda Scarlisle, and Roller Rage Rosie worked hard to create impenetrable walls while Bully Julie showed off her experience, skating backwards and whipping the jammers down the straight-aways. PCDD blockers Nassty and Great Dame delivered some impressive hits, but with many of their players in the penalty box during the second half, it was hard to keep up with the Rockettes. Samwise Banshee showed off her jamming skills in the second half, racing around the track with ease and pumping her fist in the air with excitement. PCDD were never able to regain the lead. The Rockettes closed out the exciting evening with a final score of 169 to 95. “We realized we better wake up and make the second half ours”, Eezzz Nutzzz later explained. “There were great strong walls, communication, and teamwork.” Rockalishous reported that at one point in the second half, B. Stang told the Rockettes he had no advice for them and that they should just keep doing what they’re doing. Apparently it worked!
At the after party, MVP’s were chosen by the opposite team and received a beautiful golden wheel trophy. For the Rockettes, Bully Julie held down MVP Blocker while Snow Bunny on Wheelz took home MVP Jammer. PCDD’s Pantyknocker scored best blocker and Em I Ay took best jammer.
This was the debut bout with SDRD for skaters Samwise Banshee and Roller Rage Rosie, who both previously skated with teams in other parts of the country. The Rockettes are lucky to have such hard-hitting, fast-skating girls join for the 2012 season! You can catch the Rockettes playing again next Saturday, March 17th up in Bakersfield against the Diamond Divas Rough Cuts and again on April 14th at Hidden City.
Aside from all the action on the floor, San Diego Roller Derby made over $200 in bake sale proceeds that go directly back into the league. We use this money to pay registration fees for tournaments, pay for travel costs of skaters, and various other purposes within the league. We thank everyone who purchased the baked goods that were made entirely from scratch by SDRD skaters! We would also like to thank the vendors, announcers, sponsors, photographers, volunteers, and of course the fans that make our bouts such a fun place to be on a Saturday night!
San Diego Roller Derby’s charity of the month is the Polinsky Children’s Center. This is a 24-hour San Diego facility that provides emergency shelter for children who must be separated from their families for their own safety. The proceeds of SDRD’s bout raffle will benefit this great organization and their efforts. To make a donation or find out how you can help, visit their website at http://www.promises2kids.org/programs/polinsky-children’s-center.
Wondering what the Starlettes are up to? In less than two weeks, they will be traveling up to Bakersfield, CA to participate in the 3rd Annual Dustbowl Tournament hosted by Derby Revolution of Bakersfield on March 24th and 25th. SDRD’s fastest, strongest, hardest-hitting ladies will be battling 10 other teams from all over the west coast for the championship title. Last year, the Starlettes placed 4th in this tournament. This year, coach B. Stang hopes the ladies can bring home a 1st place trophy. Can they pull it off? Check back soon for details from the tournament!